What is the Self-Generation Incentive Program?
To encourage more residential storage deployments in California, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) established the Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP). The program provides incentives to help reduce the costs of storage to consumers. Residential storage batteries reduce strain on the utility power grid and in turn help reduce the need to build expensive fossil fuel-fired power plants.
SGIP is structured in the form of five incentive levels or steps. The incentive rate declines over time as the market matures. On a statewide basis, approximately $57 million has been made available specifically for residential energy storage systems through the calendar year.
How much of a financial incentive will I receive for my Energy Storage System?
It depends on when you apply and which step the program is in. Incentives are greater in earlier steps. Additionally, the incentive amount in future steps may be lower depending on how quickly the incentive budget in earlier steps was fully subscribed.
What is required to qualify for SGIP?
You energy storage system must be used to support the electric grid and be located with Pacific Gas & Electric (“PG&E”), Southern California Edison (“SCE”), Southern California Gas Company, or San Diego Gas & Electric (“SDG&E”) utility territory. Please contact us for more details on this if you’d like additional information.
May I use my energy storage system solely as a source of backup power?
No. The SGIP rules prohibit energy storage systems from being used solely for backup purposes. The system must “cycle” – charge and discharge on a regular basis – to meet some of your onsite electrical needs.
What are the requirements to receive SGIP?
- As your applicant, Swell must first file all the SGIP paperwork.
- After your installation is complete, and utility permission to operate is provided, we will submit more SGIP paperwork. Then, after they review, an SGIP administrator may inspect your system to confirm it is operating properly.
- Then you will receive your cash rebate, approximately 30 to 60 days from the SGIP approval.
- Over the next five years you’ll need to meet SGIP’s minimum requirement to support the grid infrastructure. For each energy storage system installed, this means discharging 687 kWh of the system's capacity to meet your home’s energy needs every 12 months. This is intended to ensure that the energy storage system reduces strain on the grid by reducing the amount of power you are drawing from the system during peak periods.
How do I make sure my energy storage system meets the 687 kWh annual usage requirement?
You will want to make sure Energy Storage System is in a setting that allows discharging to the grid. You can check the setting in your system's app. If you do have questions, please reach out to our Support Team and we'll be happy to walk you through your app!
How can I view my energy storage system usage and see how I am tracking towards the 687 kWh annual metric?
You may see your system production from the app of your energy storage system.
What if I fall short of the 687 kWh per year requirement?
If your system is not on track to meeting the annual usage the SGIP program requires, certain settings of your system may be restricted, for example, limiting the share of the system’s capacity you can reserve for backup. This may occur 8 months into the year and the anniversary of such date for the next four years of the program. This will be a temporary restriction only, with full functionality restored once you have met the program’s cycling requirements.